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Ballet Talk for Dancers

Starting pointe again?

Guest roellercoaster

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Guest roellercoaster

I am 24 years old, and I started ballet when I was 5 at a ballet school associated with a professional ballet company. I started pointe when I was 12, and danced very seriously until I was 18 (classes 6 days per week, intensive summer programs, etc.). I stopped ballet when I went to college, but continued with modern dance for 4 years. Since I graduated, I've been taking an intermediate/advanced adult ballet class once or twice a week at a local studio. I am thinking about enrolling in the adult pointe class at my studio, but I am worried about starting pointe again after 6 years. Any advice? Is it worth a shot, or am I just going to hurt myself?

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Hello roellercoaster, welcome to Ballet Talk for Dancers! :)


It's great that you are back in ballet again, and even thinking about pointe work. I would suggest, though, that you consider taking more technique classes than one or two a week if you plan to work on pointe. At least 3 classes a week to be safe. :yes:

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What you could do is enroll in the pointe class and do the barre and centere exersices in demi which is a very good way to rebuild the stength and balance you'll need to be en pointe again. Taking additional technique classes, at least 3x a week is definatly a must when your goal is pointe shoes.

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I did about the same thing you are doing. I quit pointe work during college, and then started again when I was about 22 or 23. It didn't kill me. I'm 31, and 2 children later, I'm still doing pointe. It does help that you had pointe training as a youth. I think a lot of adults have a harder time with it when they begin as adults. I don't know if it's the pain, or the fact that most adults don't have the time to train 3-4 times a week, and so it's harder to get in shape for pointe.

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I am not much older than you, have a similar background, and have just begun to attempt what you are thinking of doing. I take ballet class at least four days per week, but take different kinds of technique classes at least five, and with rehearsals am dancing 6-7 days per week. I only take pointe twice a week, for 20-40 minutes, and that is quite enough for me right now. My feet are significantly weaker than they were "way back when" and I am sure that if I want to do much more pointe, I need to either do some extra strengthening exercises and/or give it time and continue taking 3+ ballet technique classes per week. I can't wear the same shoes I did when I was younger because my feet have changed, so that has been an interesting puzzle. Initially, I could feel I was "sitting" into my arches, and, extremely alarmed, asked my teacher if me attempting this was the dumbest thing she'd seen in a while. She didn't seem to think so, and, sure enough, I'm able to pull up out of my feet once again. It might not be everyone's cup of tea, but I am finding this fun and rewarding.

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The better you can understand what you're trying to accomplish --- how your feet and legs and body should look and feel and work en pointe --- the better off you'll be. Given your background you likely do understand these endpoints. If you can understand when you're working correctly and when you're beyond your fatigue point and are just schlepping around in pointe shoes --- that will allow you to maximize your training time without risking injury (as long as you stop when you can tell you're fatigued).

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I came back to pointe after a 10 year break. With regular dancing I had no problem doing it again. You may want to take it slow though. Really give the feet a chance to strengthen up again.


Depending on how advanced you were as a youngster, and it sounds like you were advanced, maybe you could do ballet classes at home in addition to outside classes. It's so hard to find time to take a lot of classes during the week when we have work schedules.



I have various David Howard DVD's and they have kept me in very good shape through the years.

Edited by winky
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